Trinity Alumnus to Premiere Short Film 'Ghost Tour' for Free Online October 26

Erik Bloomquist ’14 Filmed Short at Mark Twain House, Will Appear in 'Rear Window' with Kevin Bacon

Hartford, Connecticut, October 19, 2015 – Even as he continues to act in major theatrical productions such as Rear Window at Hartford Stage, writer/producer/director/actor Erik Bloomquist ’14 is always developing his own stories, whether they take the form of plays, short films, or even feature-length movies.

On Monday, October 26, the Trinity College alumnus will premiere his latest short film, Ghost Tour, for free online just in time for Halloween. The production was filmed on location at the historic Mark Twain House & Museum in Hartford. See the trailer here, and like Ghost Tour on Facebook to see the film when it is released.

“I wanted to tell a short classic ghost story in a really sophisticated way,” said Bloomquist, a native of Newington, Connecticut. “I tried to build it around a location, and I’ve always loved the Mark Twain House. They were very gracious and let us do two full overnights there.”

While the Mark Twain House & Museum generally charges an hourly rental fee, Director of Communication and Special Programs Jacques Lamarre said that a special agreement was made with Bloomquist to waive the fee in exchange for the use of his film. “We do ghost tours here at the museum, and we thought that his film would be a good addition to those tours,” Lamarre said. “We’re going to be premiering it here October 29 and 30, and it will be featured in our 176-seat auditorium whenever we do ghost tours in the future. It was a very professional production, and we’re excited to see the results.”

In the eight-minute film, the Twain House fills in for a museum that used to be an all-boys’ school, where “a terrible tragedy happened,” said Bloomquist. The school was closed but later reopened as a museum run by two boys from the school. “They’ve made their living doing ghost tours, but now they’ve run out of money and the doors are closing,” Bloomquist said. “One guide is a skeptic, and of course, something begins to challenge that on the last night after the final ghost tour.”

Bloomquist wrote the script and produced the film with his girlfriend, Danielle Bonanno – who is also an actress and filmmaker – after the filming location had been secured, so the story was tailored to the specific shooting constraints. “I usually don’t work like that, but based on what that location had to offer, and the restrictions given that it’s a working museum, we structured a story around that,” said Bloomquist, who is also the director of the film. The logistics did not allow for a lot of action, so the eerie tone is “much more atmospheric than a bunch of ‘boos’ and ‘gotchas’ all over the place,” he said. “It’s kind of a love letter to the location; the location itself is a character, which I think is very exciting.”

Bloomquist said there were 40 to 50 people involved in the shoot, counting actors and crew members. “The museum had a few people there with us supervising, moving things for us, and answering questions,” he said.

Ghost Tour was self-funded, and Bloomquist sees the project as a way to build the portfolio of his production company, Mainframe Pictures. “I think that having these products has enormous value for legitimizing what I do and getting myself out there,” he said. “So when it comes to doing bigger projects, it’s clear that I know what I’m doing. I know no one else is going to come in until I’ve proven myself.”

Mainframe Pictures has already released The Cobblestone Corridor (2015), which Bloomquist produced with his brother, Carson. The 25-minute crime-drama set at a prep school has a television deal with local PBS affiliate CPTV. “It’s going to start airing on ShortsTV in the coming months, which is an international premium cable channel, and it’s on some pay on-demand websites,” Bloomquist said.

Another project in the works is the feature-length film Founders Day, which Bloomquist has been writing for years. A “concept trailer” can be viewed here.

Since graduating from Trinity, Bloomquist was cast in several productions at Ivoryton Playhouse and Hartford Stage. He returned to the Trinity campus in March 2015 to direct and choreograph the Connecticut collegiate premiere of Carrie: The Musical. His latest stage role is in the ensemble of the world premiere of Rear Window, starring Kevin Bacon, at Hartford Stage. “There’s an ensemble of local actors, myself included, who are the people in the other windows. … You’re getting voyeuristic glimpses of what other people are doing,” Bloomquist said. Preview performances start October 22, and the play officially runs October 30 through November 15. The entire run is already sold out.

For Bloomquist, Ghost Tour and Rear Window are just the beginning of an ambitious career in the arts. “I want to do everything,” he said. “I think performing, directing, theater, and film are all different muscles. In the end, I just love telling stories – really interesting, sharp, unique stories.”

Written by Andrew J. Concatelli